Why small businesses need social media

The marketing industry is often viewed as a complex realm full of statistics, high profile campaigns and slick account executives.  Solutions seem to appear through formulas that only those with specialised expertise can understand.  For those who do not live in the “Mad Men” style world, marketing can seem a bit daunting, putting us at a loss for what to do and where to start. Many small business owners make the mistake that there is nothing they can do to elevate their company profile and strengthen their brand.

One of today’s most powerful marketing tools is right at our fingertips, easily accessible and used by most of us on a daily basis.  From the world’s largest corporations to single person enterprises, one of today’s most important marketing tools is social media.

With two-thirds of global Internet users visiting social media sites, the potential for audience reach is staggering. By 2008, social networking site use surpassed email use, indicating the importance of these sites in people’s daily lives1.

Many companies have caught on and started to make their presence known on sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and blogs.  Likewise, social media sites have realised their marketing capabilities and now offer businesses a variety of ways to target consumers. Tweeting, Facebook apps, branded profiles, and YouTube videos, are only some of the ways to reach consumers, with more business-friendly options emerging regularly.  This variety allows businesses to choose what fits best for them, their brands, and their clients.

The benefits for using social media allow small businesses to grow and flourish.  It also allows for customer relationship building on a very personal level as well as instant feedback from customers.  This dynamic helps small businesses retain their own personality and quality service, whilst catering to an audience both on and offline.

There is no formula for success with social media marketing.  There is no template or specific combination of sites to use.  There is no tone or style of profile that can guarantee success.  What is certain, however, is the fact that business presence on social media sites is becoming more and more crucial to reaching a target audience.  Like face-to-face networking, online social networking is now an essential part of creating a place for your brand.  To miss this marketing sector is to miss out on what is most likely the future of successful marketing.

For help on starting to use social media marketing or to improve your current social media strategy, give us a call at 0116 254 9888.  Cite can help get you started and give you the reigns from there, or we can give you ongoing support, updating statuses and blogs for you.

1. “Global Face and Networked Places” Report by Neilson. 2009.